What to eat at Popteño
Author: Maya Kerthyasa
1:13PM, Jan 30, 2015
The Porteño gang are a resilient bunch.
They're back in action, following the closure of their
Sydney restaurant three weeks ago after a fire in the kitchen,
but not exactly as you know them.
The restaurant has risen from the ashes as Popteño: a pop-up in the old Rushcutters site on Neild Avenue. There's no eight-hour lamb or suckling pig, even the popular Brussels sprouts haven't made the trip to Rushcutters Bay. What you have instead is a menu new to even the Porteño faithful, which focuses on a more homely style of cooking - the kind you'd expect from the Argentine grandmother you never had.
There are sunny entrées such as tender barbecued octopus with aïoli and confit potatoes, and lightly fried zucchini flowers teamed with a truffle-y pecorino sabayon. Then there's the pasta courses - gnocchi (or ñoquis, as the Latin Americans spell it), say, in a sharp parmesan broth with a dusting of nutmeg - and the bigger dishes, such as a stew of scallops, mussels, fish, calamari, bugs and legumes with a side of fried pumpkin bread for dipping's sake, or a gutsy platter of Milanese-style crumbed veal accompanied by aïoli, lemon wedges and a pretty radicchio and orange salad.
The dessert department holds up its end, too; we're looking at you, milk flan with dulce de leche and cream. The Argentine wines have joined the migration, too, as have a short but sweet selection of cocktails, best enjoyed up at the bar. At the moment, the fun is scheduled to continue for two months. We'll see you there for a Fernet and cola soon.
Popteño, from 6pm Wed-Sat through 14 March, 10 Neild Ave, Rushcutters Bay, NSW, (02) 8399 1440
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